Monday, March 31, 2014

More 2014 Topps Heritage (With a Bit More Trade Bait Too!)

Yesterday, I opened up the top half of a Wal*Mart 2014 Topps Heritage rack pack and then forced myself to set aside the bottom half of the pack until I finished grading a pile of PreCalculus exams.  I'm pleased to say that I did manage to finish the grading (and returned the exams in class today) which means I now can dip into the bottom half of the pack.  I'm still looking for my first short print out of the set - maybe this will be my lucky day?

36.  Coco Crisp

49.  Xander Bogaerts & Jonathan Schoop
137.  Anthony Gose
140.  Jared Weaver
294.  David Robertson
369.  Omar Infante
374.  Wilfredo Tovar & Mauricio Robles
423.  Alex Wood
TAN-CC.  Then & Now:  Roberto Clemente & Miguel Cabrera

This is my first Then & Now of the 2014 Heritage set.  I think the design is a bit better than what I can remember from previous years - it certainly has a retro vibe to it which I like.  You also can't go wrong with the player pairing!  This happened to be the second Clemente insert card in the rack pack too!
NAP-MS.  New Age Performers:  Max Scherzer

So many Tigers!  Cabrera had no problem with Detroit after agreeing to some type of monster contract but it appears Scherzer doesn't feel the same way about the Tigers.  He apparently turned down a large offer and will (presumably) be a free agent at year's end.  I guess you might as well save some time and paint some pinstripes on Scherzer's cards this year just so you can say you had him first as a Yankee (or maybe a Dodger since LA is quickly becoming the west coast New York).  

In terms of duplicates, once again I didn't fare too well.  The Coco Crisp is a duplicate as is the Scherzer New Age Performer card.  The Crisp isn't a big deal but getting two NAP's in three rack packs is rare - and to have them both be the same card is downright annoying and frustrating!  Oh well, more trade bait I suppose!

Barry Larkin Collection 253: 1998 Pacific Crown Collection - #265

Barry Larkin
Year:  1998
Brand:  Pacific Crown Collection
Card number:  265

I've made it quite clear on my blog that I am a fan of most things Pacific-related. While the 1998 Pacific Crown Collection isn't my favorite of the many, many different designs that Pacific churned out, it is a fairly nice looking card.  On the front, you get a (mostly) easy-to-read team name plus a bright team logo.  On the back, you get a second photo (and plenty more team logos) along with a single year's worth of statistics.  Plus, since it's Pacific, you also get text in two different languages.  As a whole, it's a nice looking card - for Larkin specifically both images are quite nice.  The front image has a slightly different take on the classic batting shot (this time the photo taken a second or so after contact) while the back photo is a benign posed shot (with some serious shadow effects).

Sunday, March 30, 2014

I Should be Grading Exams (But Topps Heritage is More Fun)!

I should be grading PreCalculus exams right now...but I'm not.  To be fair, I also did actually have to go to Wal*Mart (and when in the big box store, you might as well check the card aisle, right?).  My Wal*Mart is notoriously crappy - they never get new cards (or LEGO Collectible Minifigures - I still haven't seen any of the Collectible LEGO Movie Minifigures at my Wal*Mart).  Given that, I had extremely low expectations that I'd find any cards that I wanted...but lo and behold, what did my wandering eye spy?

Yep, a pair of 2014 Heritage rack packs.

Now, this is exciting for two reasons:  First, as I said, my Wal*Mart only recently got the 2014 Topps flagship cards (and hardly any of those) and so this was a surprise.  Second, the two rack packs mark the first 2014 card packs that I've purchased for myself (the only other two 2014 packs that I've opened were Heritage rack packs that my wife bought me when she went shopping at Target).

As is my custom, I'm going to prolong the opening experience for as long as possible - after all, I don't usually get to open new stuff so I'm going to enjoy it!  This will also serve as a nice way to "reward" myself for each page of the PreCalculus exam that I managed to get graded for the entire 26 person class.

The Target packs have red bordered parallels - Wal*Mart gets their customary blue bordered parallels.  I did manage to find one Target one in the two rack packs from there - will I get one of the blue ones in the Wal*Mart packs?  Only time will tell I guess.

Best way to start to find out is to open up the packs though - here is the top half of the first rack pack.  I'l have the rest of the cards at a later date (basically when I get done grading exams)!

35.  Ryan Vogelson
75.  Cody Asche
86.  Wei-Yin Chen
125.  Nate Schierholtz
130.  Austin Jackson
302.  Adam Eaton

310.  Domonic Brown

343.  Russell Martin
396.  Everth Cabrera
BF-RC.  Baseball Flashbacks:  Roberto Clemente

The Clemente is nice enough but this half of the rack pack was almost an instant disappointment.  Of the ten cards, I already had four of them (Schierholtz, Jackson, Eaton, and Brown).  This is terribly disappointing given how few cards I currently own from the set (and given the fact that I do hope to complete this set)!  On the bright side, I now have a small sampling of 2014 Topps Heritage Trade Bait!

Barry Larkin Collection 252: 1992 O-Pee-Chee Premier - #96

Barry Larkin
Year:  1992
Brand:  O-Pee-Chee Premier
Card number:  96

The O-Pee-Chee Premier set had a rather pompous name for the time (but at least it was a marked improvement over the 1992 O-Pee-Chee flagship effort).  In fact, had I know about O-Pee-Chee Premier when I was a kid, I probably would have chased the set!  Instead, the only O-Pee-Chee that I ever saw was the "clone of Topps except with French added on the back."  Since I didn't know French, nor would I ever take French in the future, cards with French on them as their only distinguishing feature never appealed to me!

As for the this particular Larkin card, I think the back is ten times better than the front!  I love the giant Reds' logo (especially since it's the running man).  I also like the mug shot and the easy-to-read card number.  I don't care for the vertical text but I am well aware that vertical text was a popular card element in the 90s and so I'll forgive O-Pee-Chee for that.


Saturday, March 29, 2014

Delivery Time! Nomo's Sushi Sure is Tasty (A December 2013 Trade Post)

It's time to dip back into the 'ol mailbag - something I ought to do a bit more often if I'm ever going to get all caught up on trade packages.  Today's trade is courtesy of Michael over at Nomo's Sushi Platter.  This is the result of (if I recall correctly) a Trade Stack trade with a few extras going in each direction.  Luckily for me, Michael hasn't updated his Nomo blog since December so maybe that means I'm not so late in posting either (I don't think it works that way but a guy can hope, right?)...

First up, the requisite "one card from my want list" that is needed for any Trade Stack claim:

Yeah, I'm still working on 2013 Allen & Ginter.  Yeah, I'm tired of the set now too.  No, I won't give up - at least not yet.  Speaking of 2013 Ginter, if you haven't given up yet either I still have a bunch available for trade!

In addition to the Ginter card, Michael also sent a smattering of Reds my way.  I decided to scan my favorite three for all of you to enjoy.

We begin with a card of Chris Sabo from 1996 Fleer.

This is actually the parallel set that Fleer issued in '96 (the original '96 Fleer cards are printed on matte stock and have a much more washed out look).  Personally, I think the parallel set looks better!

Next, how about a surprise autograph?!

Yeah, this caught me off guard too!

That's Devin Mesoraco - the Reds' starting catcher for the next bunch of years (assuming he figures out how to hit big league pitching).  I don't particularly care for sticker autographs but at least this one the sticker fits in the card design almost flawlessly.  If you are going to do sticker autos, they should like this card!  I won't even hold the fact that it is a Bowman card against it...good stuff!

The final card to show off is this Topps Archives Reserve card of Joe Adcock.

There's something fun (and weird) about seeing chrome refractor versions of old time cards...  I suppose the novelty has mostly worn off for most people thanks to Topps Heritage, but I collect Heritage so infrequently lately that it's still somewhat novel for me!

Thanks for the great trade Micheal - and sorry once again for my incredibly slow response time in terms of getting a "thank you" post up on the blog!  As for anyone else, perhaps you want to see if I can get a thank you note up to you quicker?!  If so, check out my want list and make an offer!

Barry Larkin Collection 251: 1997 Donruss Preferred - #185 - National Treasures Subset

Barry Larkin
Year:  1997
Brand:  Donruss Preferred
Subset:  National Treasures
Card number:  185

The 1997 Donruss Preferred set was somewhat confusing for the average collector.  The full set consisted of 200 cards - 100 of which were bronze and were considered commons.  There were 60 silver cards (which were seeded 1:3 packs), 30 gold cards (seeded 1:12 packs), and 10 platinum (seeded 1:48 packs).  Barry's National Treasures subset card happens to be one of the silver cards in the set (Larkin also has a base card in the set - #109 which is one of the rarer gold cards).

Although you can't exactly tell from the scan, the front of the Larkin card is super shiny (and silver of course).  There is just enough of a hint of a treasury type design to make the National Treasures subset come together.  The design on the back is also somewhat reminiscent of a dollar bill design which helps to solidify the theme even more.  The biggest design flaw with the card is the three large logos on the back of the card - Donruss should have shrunk those down and put either more statistics on the back or a small written blurb for the player.  Otherwise, this is a fairly unique card design - and a nice addition to my Barry Larkin Collection!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Trade Stack 59: The Stack Reaches Seven Cards!

Here is how this works:
Every so often (i.e. whenever I feel like it), I will add a card to a "Trade Stack".  Whenever the stack becomes appealing enough to someone, that person needs to comment on the post saying they'd like to claim the stack AND tell me which card they are sending off of my want list.  That's all you have to do - trade me ONE card (or more, of course) card from my want list for the entire stack of cards that I'm offering.  Each time, it will be first come, first serve...so act quickly (unless of course you are a gambler and hope to wait it out until there are 10+ cards in the stack that you want in exchange for a single 2004 UD Vintage card that I am looking for)!

The Trade Stack:
Last update:  3/28/14

I have to admit, I'm getting tired of this trade stack.  Won't you claim it so I can start a new one?  In order to tempt someone into claiming the stack (of seven cards now), I'm adding an Allen & Ginter card from the 2008 set - one of my favorite years for A&G!  Jump in and claim the stack before someone else does...or keep waiting it out while I add more and more cards to the pile.  Your choice!

If you want the stack, remember - all you need to do is offer up any one card from my want list.

2008 Topps Allen & Ginter's:
74.  Khalil Greene - Padres

1998 Fleer Sports Illustrated:
107.  Henry Rodriguez - Cubs


2012 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions:
74.  Brett Hull

2012 Marvel Avengers Assemble:
115.  Dr. Banner


1985 Topps:
526.  Dave Palmer - Expos

1991 Donruss:
699.  Stan Belinda - Pirates


2003 Donruss Estrellas:
45.  Shawn Green - Dodgers


Want the card(s) in the stack?  Act fast - tell me which card you will send me off my want list in the comments below!  You must leave a comment on the trade stack post in order to claim the card - no more claims via email!  If no one claims this card within a reasonable amount of time (a few hours up to a few days, depending) - I'll add another card to the stack and the process will start again!


Previously Claimed Trade Stacks:
Stack 01:  2 cards by dayf
Stack 02:  8 cards by Justin
Stack 03:  17 cards by Cam
Stack 04:  4 cards by Cam
Stack 05:  9 cards by Daily Dimwit
Stack 06:  4 cards by The Lost Collector
Stack 07:  1 card by Baseball Dad
Stack 08:  1 card by M. Spiegel
Stack 09:  6 cards by bwsmith25
Stack 10:  6 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 11:  1 card by Patrick
Stack 12:  5 cards by Matt B.
Stack 13:  4 cards by Steve G.
Stack 14:  3 cards by ShaneK
Stack 15:  7 cards by Ryan G
Stack 16:  1 card by longlivethewho
Stack 17:  4 cards by hiflew
Stack 18:  4 cards by Potch
Stack 19:  2 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 20:  5 cards by by Play at the Plate
Stack 21:  5 cards by BA Benny
Stack 22:  1 card by IkesCards
Stack 23:  8 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 24:  1 card by BA Benny
Stack 25:  2 cards by Jeff P.
Stack 26:  10 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 27:  1 card by BA Benny
Stack 28:  7 cards by ThingsAreFunnerHere
Stack 29:  3 cards by TheBrooklynMet
Stack 30:  4 cards by Adam C.
Stack 31:  10 cards by Play at the Plate
Stack 32:  8 cards by Josh D.
Stack 33:  6 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 34:  1 card by Potch
Stack 35:  9 cards by Cool Breeze
Stack 36:  11 cards by Kev 
Stack 37:  6 cards by Tunguska
Stack 38:  12 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 39:  8 cards by Spiegel83
Stack 40:  1 card by Kyle4KC
Stack 41:  4 cards by dayf
Stack 42:  1 card by AdamE
Stack 43:  1 card by madding
Stack 44:  10 cards by Commishbob
Stack 45:  1 (almost complete) puzzle by Baseball Dad
Stack 46:  8 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 47:  5 cards by The Junior Junkie
Stack 48:  4 cards by dayf
Stack 49:  9 cards by Swing and a Pop-Up
Stack 50:  9 cards by Commishbob
Stack 51:  3 cards by Need More Cardboard
Stack 52:  1 card by Play at the Plate
Stack 53:  12 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 54:  4 cards by The Junior Junkie
Stack 55:  9 cards by Spiegel83
Stack 56:  2 cards cards by Joe Frecker
Stack 57:  4 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 58:  2 cards by Chunter
Stack 59:  ?? by ??

Barry Larkin Collection 250: 2002 Topps 206 - #TR-BL - Relic

Barry Larkin
Year:  2002
Brand:  Topps 206
Card number:  TR-BL

For the 250th Barry Larkin card to be added to my online collection, I figured I should showcase one of my Larkin "hits."  I don't actually own all that many hits of Barry (most of his playing career was completed before the "bits of fabric" rage really hit baseball card sets), however of the hits that I do own this happens to be one of my favorites!  I love the old time look of the card - and the clean design of the frame.  I also love the fact that there is a red pin stripe in the bit of jersey material - it makes for a much, much more interesting card than a plan white swatch.  Even better, the bit of cloth looks like it could be from the exact jersey that Barry is wearing in the photo.

The downside to the vast majority of relic cards like this is the complete absence of an interesting card back.  Besides the typical legalese, there's not much to look at (unless you like ugly foil stickers).  At least the upper part of the back of the card looks nice - and is easy enough to read (even if I hate the fact that Topps used letters rather than numbers for the card "number").

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Great Reorganization: Step 3: Continuing the Slow Slog of Sorting (Plus More Trade Bait)

If you look at how far along I was in terms of organizing back on March 13 and compare it with the image below, you'll probably be able to tell that I've actually somehow managed to make some actual progress (despite the end-of-the-semester craziness that is March/April)!

At the moment, I'm still sorting cards into giant piles by "year."  From there, the real work will begin when I start deciding which sets to keep and which to give up on.  I've also got to figure out how to collect the "random Reds."

At the moment, I have lots and lots of set binders, plus a single binder that houses my Barry Larkin Collection.  I don't currently have any other Reds-specific binders...and for sets that I don't choose to collect in their entirety, I suppose I should start a Reds only binder (or more).

This makes me curious - how do you team collectors store your collection?  How do you organize what you have (and what you still need)?

While you ponder that (and hopefully provide me some clues in the comments below), I figured I would make a few more things available.  My last post I mentioned having a complete base set (cards #1 - 100) of the 2005 Upper Deck Classics set which did garner some interest.  Unfortunately, I couldn't work anything out - so now I'm back with some actual prices to go along with a few items.  As always, let me know if you are interested - and I could be persuaded to trade rather than sell depending on what you might have available from my want list.

Note:  All prices include shipping to the continental United States.


  • 2005 Upper Deck Classics base set (cards #1 - 100):  Asking $15.00
  • 2011 Topps Lineage complete set (cards #1 - 200):  Asking $15.00
  • 2013 Topps Allen & Ginter base set (cards #1 - 300):  Asking $20.00

I'm sure I'll have more to add to this list as time goes on - but it would be awesome if I could clear out those three complete sets before too long...it would free up quite a bit of room in my collection!  Shoot me an email (or leave a comment below) if you are interested in any of them.


The Last of my 2014 Topps Heritage (For Now Anyhow)

It's time to finally finish off my second rack pack.  I think I strung out the anticipation long enough - but that's what you have to do when you haven't been buying new product lately!

Without any further delay, here's the bottom half of the rack pack:

38.  Brett Lawrie
336.  Andy Dirks
126.  Mike Matheny
330.  C.C. Sabathia
NAP-MS.  Max Scherzer

The New Age Performers return once again in 2014.  Personally, I'm sick of these but I do respect the continuity that Topps has shown with the Heritage line.  This year's set is seeded 1:4 rack packs.
390.  Alex Avila

This was a rather Tigers heavy pack...and the Avila card is probably my favorite out of all the base cards I pulled in the bottom half.  It's something about the trees in the background of Detroit Tigers Heritage cards (I noticed this with the 2011 Heritage set as well).
36.  Coco Crisp

I think everyone who pulls this card feels compelled to showcase it for one reason or another.  Who am I to disagree?
302.  Adam Eaton
125.  Nate Schierholtz
352.  Edward Mujica

The best thing about the 2014 Topps Heritage set from a set collector's perspective is that the little code on the back of the card is actually useful!  In fact, you can tell if you have some sort of regular 'ol base card if the code# ends in 7119.  If it ends in anything else, you have something "special" such as an insert, parallel, short print, error variation, etc.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Mark H. Sends Me Some Vintage! (PWE #2)

Last night, I highlighted the first PWE that Mark H. recently sent my way which was chock full of vintage Reds goodness.  Today, I am happy to report that I get to show off a second such PWE full of vintage Reds!

Once again, Mark stuffed the envelope full with 18 various Reds cards - and this time it was really hard to narrow it down to a reasonable number of scans to show off here on the blog!  However, duty calls so here we go with my favorites.

A good place to start is with one of the all-time best managers the Reds ever had - Sparky Anderson.

This card was actually Sparky's manager "rookie" card (hence the lack of Reds' hat on his noggin).

Of course, even the best managers need good players - and Sparky certainly had his share of great players.  Some of those greats included Don Gullett.

You might not be able to tell from the scan, but this is actually one of the 1975 minis that Night Owl loves so much.  Me, I'm happy to have any and all Reds from the set - but the looseness of the minis in a binder page will annoy me too much to actually ever think about completing the full set (again, I think Night Owl is on a crusade of sorts to get proper pages made by Ultra Pro but until I see them...).

The next card of note is actually a pair of Sporting News All-Star cards (one of Pete Rose and one of Tommy Helms).  I guess these form some sort of puzzle if you have the whole collection?

The problem with puzzle backs like that is that the cards are awfully boring to look at when you only own one or two.  I do like the fronts a lot though - and Topps did a nice job with those in the Heritage line when the set was up for its "modern reimagining."

Next, another Reds' pitcher.  For all of the Reds' successes, they really aren't well known for the pitchers (besides the back-to-back no-hitters of Johnny Vander Meer).  However, that doesn't mean there were never decent pitchers to don the red and white.

Gary Nolan, for instance, won over 100 games for the Reds from 1967 through 1977.  His .308 ERA was also decent, though certainly not spectacular.  However, for a Reds' pitcher he was pretty darn good.

Finally, we end with my favorite card of the envelope:

Getting a Pete Rose card is always a fun experience!  I think part of the appeal is the fact that you can't get Rose cards in modern products (licensed stuff anyhow) which helps to keep him a bit more interesting (as opposed to the plethora of modern Ruth, Mantle, Mays, etc. cards that Topps beats collectors over the heads with every year).

Thanks so much for the vintage goodies Mark!  And, as always, should anyone else be interested in trading - check out my want list and make an offer!

More Topps Heritage: Nolan Ryan Shows Up!

In the past two days, I opened up my first 2014 Topps Heritage rack pack (courtesy of my wife)!  Today, I begin the second rack pack that my wife bought me - this is the upper half of the pack.

89.  Kyle Gibson

Kyle looks like he got his photo taken outside the parking lot of a Six Flags amusement park.  This also looks like a highly photoshopped card to me for reasons that I can't necessarily explain.
156.  Mark Ellis
118.  Justin Ruggiano
373.  Ben Revere
65MLB-NR.  Nolan Ryan

The 1965 MLB Draft insert set cards are seeded 1:6 rack packs.  This is a nice enough card - and since it features Nolan Ryan it's probably a keeper whether or not I try to complete the full insert set!
130.  Austin Jackson
310.  Domonic Brown
365.  Adeiny Heckavarria
13.  Ross Ohlendorf
175.  Dayan Viciedo

Dude looks like a giant in this photo!  (a pissed off giant we might add)

You can't really complain when a Nolan Ryan card is the best card of the (half) pack!  Still no base short prints for me...that doesn't bode well for me if I do indeed end up trying to complete the full base set!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Mark H. Sends Me Some Vintage! (PWE #1)

Last week, I received a pair of awesome PWEs from blog reader extraordinaire Mark H.!  Tonight, let's take a look at the first of the two envelopes.

Mark stuffed a pair of sliced 9-pocket pages in the envelope (my new favorite way of mailing PWEs too for what it is worth) - and then added a couple of stamps for postage.  Why two stamps for a PWE you ask?

Well, when you send EIGHTEEN cards, it gets heavy!  Let's check out the goodies!

As I said, this was a stuffed PWE - and I think I'll go through the cards from newest to oldest.  As such, we begin with this Johnny Bench beauty from 1983!

You know you are in for a postal treat when you get 18 cards and the newest card is an '83 Johnny Bench.  In fact, I love the '83 set a lot so getting the Bench is extra nice!  I believe I've even mentioned the fact that I almost wish I was born in 1983 rather than 1982 so that I could have this beautiful set as my "birth year" set instead of the rather hideous hockey stick set.

Speaking of hockey sticks...

Mark sent me one from the 1982 set too - and it's another Reds' star!  I might bag on the '82 set a lot, but I have to say this particular card is awesome.  Batting cages plus a nice view of the card (and a smiling, posed shot) - cardboard gold!

Since I can't scan every card (well, I could but who's going to make it through an 18 card scan post?), I'll skip a few cards and move into the portion of the envelope containing cards from the 1970s.

Next up, a Tom Seaver original from 1979.

I'm undecided about how I feel about the 1979 design (in terms of the front of the card) but I do know that I like the back of the card quite a bit.  Plenty of information and trivia, yet wholly readable.

If we go back in a time a bit more, we reach this wonderful card highlighting the 1976 Reds' World Series Championship.

For me, it would have been even better to have been born early enough to have been able to see the Big Red Machine in action...but at least I have 1990 to say I saw my team win a World Series (even if I was only eight years old).

Finally, we end with the oldest card in the first envelope - a 1972 Hal McRae card.

The best part of this card is the fact that the photographer couldn't even be bothered to get the guy warming up in the background to move out of the posed image shot of McRae.

Thanks for the awesome PWE Mark!  I'll post the highlights of the second envelope at a later date.  Until then, should anyone else want to trade be sure to check out my want list and make an offer!

More 2014 Heritage - The Second Half of my Rack Pack

Last night, I showed off the top half of a 2014 Topps Heritage rack pack.  This wasn't just any rack pack though - it happened to be one that my wife bought me (and my first 2014 Heritage cards of the year too)!  As you can imagine, that level of excitement can't easily be tempered...even with the plethora of Cardinals and Yankees in the first half.

Maybe the bottom half of the pack is better in terms of the cards.

398.  Daniel Webb & Chris Robinson
These two sound more like basketball player names than they do baseball player names.
215.  Matt Harrison
67.  Nick Franklin

I enjoy the posed shots with stadiums in the background.  Cards like this make me miss summer!
193.  Ian Kennedy
140.  Jered Weaver

This is one of the Target red-border variations.  They are seeded 1:4 rack packs which means they are somewhat rare (especially if you have dreams of completing the entire parallel set)!
163.  Wily Peralta
107.  Ethan Martin & Cameron Rupp
415.  Mike Zunino

I think Zunino wins "best comic on the back" award for this pack!  
1.  AL Batting Leaders
27.  Jarrod Saltalamacchia

Well, no Reds in the bottom half (and only one-third of a Red in the top half) but still a fun start to the 2014 Heritage set!  No short prints but maybe I can flip that red bordered Weaver for a short print or two?!

Monday, March 24, 2014

The First 2014 Topps Heritage in my Hands!

This weekend, I had to go in to work at the college to present to perspective high school sophomores and juniors during something called "Math & Science Saturday."  My wife went along with me and used the opportunity to do a bit of shopping while I was at work.  In a surprising move, she handed me two rack packs of 2014 Topps Heritage when she met me after the presentation!

Now, I haven't seen a single pack, rack pack, or blaster available anywhere near me, so how she found these is quite the mystery (besides the fact that they were at Target which you can see from the wrapper)!  Since this week is quite hectic, I'll be dividing the two rack packs into four posts - one for each of the halves of the pack!

Before I get to the first bunch of cards, I should say that this year's wrapper is quite colorful - the red and yellow is certainly eye catching!  Now, will the cards match the wrapper?

Rack Pack #1 - Part 1:
23.  Joaquin Benoit

First 2014 card of the year is a Padres...  Can't say I'm impressed much to paraphrase Shania Twain.
342.  Matt Carpenter
A Padre followed by a Cardinal?  Maybe Topps doesn't want my business.
43.  Carlos Beltran
And now a Yankee...  Great.  If the next card features black olives and swiss cheese (about the only two things worse than the Yankees and Cardinals) then I quit baseball collecting for good!
351.  Adam LaRoche
6.  NL RBI Leaders

Finally, something that I like - the NL RBI Leaders card is nice (but made great by the inclusion of Jay Bruce).  The Reds had two of the top four RBI leaders (Phillips just missed the cut for the card as he was 6 RBIs behind Freddie Freeman).
NF-VRA.  Voting Rights Act of 1965

It's hard to believe how backward the world was even as late as mid-last century.  The News Flashbacks are seeded 1:6 rack packs so this won't be the easiest set to complete.  In fact, Heritage insert sets are almost always difficult to complete (as in the base set with all those short prints)!  
117.  Chase Headley
242.  Ross Detwiler
185.  Matt Holliday
Another Cardinal.
34.  A.J. Burnett

The final card of the first chunk of the rack pack is yet another Reds' division rival card.  However, I can't find it in me to hate the Pirates - at least not yet since they've only had one winning season in seemingly forever (literally one winning season in my college students' lifetimes...hard to hate on that).

Although I didn't get the best player or team selection, I did enjoy my first rack pack (at least the first half of it).  What will the other half contain?  How about the second rack pack?  Will those two packs convince me to go after the full set?  These are all pressing questions that I hope to answer sooner rather than later!

Barry Larkin Collection 249: 1992 Classic - #76

Barry Larkin
Year:  1992
Brand:  Classic
Card number:  76

In 1992, Classic released yet another round of game cards.  This time, the set consisted of 200 cards with a bright blue border.  According to The Trading Card Database there were "only" 125,000 different sets produced - which means this card is not exactly rare!  To be fair, the 1992 set feels a lot more high-end than previous years of Classic - at least in 1992 there was some level of production value to the cards.

While the front of the card is alright (though the photo could have been cropped a bit better to avoid all the wasted space at the top), the back of the card is quite dull.  You get the requisite trivia questions (the main point of the Classic brand of cards) but otherwise the back is basically empty.  Only one year of statistics is almost always disappointing - and in a set that is all about trivia, it seems like a missed opportunity to not include at least five years' worth of statistics!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Trade Stack 59: Trying Out the New Scanner!

Here is how this works:
Every so often (i.e. whenever I feel like it), I will add a card to a "Trade Stack".  Whenever the stack becomes appealing enough to someone, that person needs to comment on the post saying they'd like to claim the stack AND tell me which card they are sending off of my want list.  That's all you have to do - trade me ONE card (or more, of course) card from my want list for the entire stack of cards that I'm offering.  Each time, it will be first come, first serve...so act quickly (unless of course you are a gambler and hope to wait it out until there are 10+ cards in the stack that you want in exchange for a single 2004 UD Vintage card that I am looking for)!

The Trade Stack:
Last update:  3/23/14

My old scanner bit the dust this week which meant I had to get a brand new device.  For the initial "test run" of the scanner (and to learn how to work the darn thing) I figured I ought to go with a scan-light type post...and wouldn't you know that the Trade Stack is a perfect opportunity for a one (new) scan post!  

Today's addition to the stack is the sixth card in the stack (and you get all six for any ONE card off my want list)!  The newest member of the stack also happens to be an extra of mine from a set that I'm still working on - the 1998 Sports Illustrated set.  Here's what I'm still looking for from that set just in case you have any lying around...
1998 Fleer Sports Illustrated Wants:Base:  6, 7, 8, 10, 14, 18, 22, 24, 26, 30, 31, 32, 36, 41, 44, 46, 47, 50, 51, 53, 56, 58, 59, 64, 75, 77, 79, 80, 82, 83, 84, 87, 88, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 99, 105, 106, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 116, 120, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 132, 137, 140, 141, 42, 146, 148, 150, 154, 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 163, 165, 167, 168, 169, 173, 174, 175, 177, 179, 181, 184, 187, 190, 197, 199Opening Day Mini-Posters:  5 (Garciaparra), 7 (Thomas), 24 (McGwire), 29 (Rodriguez/Gonzalez)

As for the new scanner, I have to say I'm happy with my trial run - the one scan sure looks a lot nicer than those from my old (now dead) scanner (see the other images in this post for a comparison).  

If you want the stack, remember - all you need to do is offer up any one card from my want list.

1998 Fleer Sports Illustrated:
107.  Henry Rodriguez - Cubs


2012 Upper Deck Goodwin Champions:
74.  Brett Hull

2012 Marvel Avengers Assemble:
115.  Dr. Banner


1985 Topps:
526.  Dave Palmer - Expos

1991 Donruss:
699.  Stan Belinda - Pirates


2003 Donruss Estrellas:
45.  Shawn Green - Dodgers


Want the card(s) in the stack?  Act fast - tell me which card you will send me off my want list in the comments below!  You must leave a comment on the trade stack post in order to claim the card - no more claims via email!  If no one claims this card within a reasonable amount of time (a few hours up to a few days, depending) - I'll add another card to the stack and the process will start again!


Previously Claimed Trade Stacks:
Stack 01:  2 cards by dayf
Stack 02:  8 cards by Justin
Stack 03:  17 cards by Cam
Stack 04:  4 cards by Cam
Stack 05:  9 cards by Daily Dimwit
Stack 06:  4 cards by The Lost Collector
Stack 07:  1 card by Baseball Dad
Stack 08:  1 card by M. Spiegel
Stack 09:  6 cards by bwsmith25
Stack 10:  6 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 11:  1 card by Patrick
Stack 12:  5 cards by Matt B.
Stack 13:  4 cards by Steve G.
Stack 14:  3 cards by ShaneK
Stack 15:  7 cards by Ryan G
Stack 16:  1 card by longlivethewho
Stack 17:  4 cards by hiflew
Stack 18:  4 cards by Potch
Stack 19:  2 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 20:  5 cards by by Play at the Plate
Stack 21:  5 cards by BA Benny
Stack 22:  1 card by IkesCards
Stack 23:  8 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 24:  1 card by BA Benny
Stack 25:  2 cards by Jeff P.
Stack 26:  10 cards by Axemanohio
Stack 27:  1 card by BA Benny
Stack 28:  7 cards by ThingsAreFunnerHere
Stack 29:  3 cards by TheBrooklynMet
Stack 30:  4 cards by Adam C.
Stack 31:  10 cards by Play at the Plate
Stack 32:  8 cards by Josh D.
Stack 33:  6 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 34:  1 card by Potch
Stack 35:  9 cards by Cool Breeze
Stack 36:  11 cards by Kev 
Stack 37:  6 cards by Tunguska
Stack 38:  12 cards by Baseball Dad
Stack 39:  8 cards by Spiegel83
Stack 40:  1 card by Kyle4KC
Stack 41:  4 cards by dayf
Stack 42:  1 card by AdamE
Stack 43:  1 card by madding
Stack 44:  10 cards by Commishbob
Stack 45:  1 (almost complete) puzzle by Baseball Dad
Stack 46:  8 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 47:  5 cards by The Junior Junkie
Stack 48:  4 cards by dayf
Stack 49:  9 cards by Swing and a Pop-Up
Stack 50:  9 cards by Commishbob
Stack 51:  3 cards by Need More Cardboard
Stack 52:  1 card by Play at the Plate
Stack 53:  12 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 54:  4 cards by The Junior Junkie
Stack 55:  9 cards by Spiegel83
Stack 56:  2 cards cards by Joe Frecker
Stack 57:  4 cards by buckstorecards
Stack 58:  2 cards by Chunter
Stack 59:  ?? by ??